According to Industrial Design report Afam News, Rotterdam-based research & design studio the new raw has further expanded its ‘print your city’ initiative with the zero waste lab in thessaloniki, greece. the project invites citizens to bring their plastic household waste in the lab, design their own custom street furniture, and 3D-print it with the help of a robotic arm and on-site recycling facilities.
With zero waste lab, the new raw explores the possibility of citizens’ involvement in transforming public spaces through recycling the city’s plastic waste. part of coca-cola’s zero waste future program in greece, the lab closes the plastic waste loop with advanced technologies at local level. besides transforming waste into furniture, citizens can learn more about the recycling process of plastic, read about the circular economy, and design new items of furniture for their neighborhoods.
Interested individuals can learn more on the initiative’s website, print your city, where they can also generate custom designs for the street furniture, choose the preferred location they would like to see them placed, as well as select between several extra functions that promote a healthy and environment-friendly lifestyle. these functions can be integrated into the furniture, and include: a bike rack, a mini gym, a tree pot, a dog feeding bowl, or a bookcase, while the geometries of the objects are based on ergonomic curvatures that accommodate a relaxed body posture. each piece is finished with a metal tag that indicates the kilos of plastic used to create it.
The initial hybrid furniture prototypes were printed in summer 2018 and placed in nea paralia, thessaloniki’s main waterfront promenade, while more than 3,000 different designs have been submitted since the website was launched to the public in december 2018. among the multiple location options available to citizens on the website, the first public space that, starting from january 2019, has been chosen to host print your city pieces is the hanth park in the city center. for the entire duration of the project, the new raw aims to recycle four tons of plastic waste, which roughly equates to the same amount produced by 14 family households in greece.